Saturday, March 18, 2023

Lionel Messi and Neymar might not feature in PSG’s next Ligue 1 game – Reports

PSG‘s hallowed front three comprising Lionel Messi, Neymar and Kylian Mbappe could miss their tie against Clermont Foot this weekend, according to RMC Sport (via PSG Talk).

Neymar and Messi have no injury concerns but are expected to feature in the FIFA World Cup Qualifiers for their respective countries on Thursday night. This would give them very little time to fly back to France and feature in PSG’s game against Clermont Foot, which is set to take place on Saturday.

Meanwhile, Kylian Mbappe is also a doubt for PSG’s next fixture. The 22-year-old forward suffered a minor calf injury whilst on international duty with France.

If Messi, Neymar and Mbappe miss out on PSG’s home game, Mauricio Pochettino could play the likes of Mauro Icardi and Julian Draxler in attack.

Despite some question marks, the trio should be ready to face Club Brugge in PSG’s opening Champions League tie on the 15th of September.

Lionel Messi made his much-awaited PSG debut against Reims on the 29th of August. The six-time Ballon d’Or winner came off the bench in the second half to replace Neymar.

As things stand, PSG are at the top of the Ligue 1 table with 12 points, two ahead of second-placed Angers and four ahead of third-placed Clermont Foot.

PSG will be hoping to finally win the UEFA Champions League with the help of Lionel Messi

The UEFA Champions League is widely regarded as PSG’s final frontier. The Parisian giants have failed to win Europe’s elite club competition despite their big-money Qatari takeover back in 2011. However, the club will be hoping for a change in their fortunes following the arrival of Lionel Messi.

PSG have only made one final appearance in the Champions League (in 2020) and ultimately lost to Bayern Munich.

Despite signing superstars this summer, including Lionel Messi and Sergio Ramos, PSG will have to navigate through a difficult group to reach the knockout rounds of the competition. The Ligue 1 side have been drawn against Premier League champions Manchester City as well as RB Leipzig and Club Brugge.

The two ties against Manchester City will hold the key to who finishes the group in the top spot.

Also Read: David James’ column – Ranking the 5 best managers in world football at the moment

Edited by Rachel Syiemlieh


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